How To Tell A Story This Christmas With Your Camera?

by Paul Cook | December 19, 2012

Christmas, the time of festivities, is up around the corner beaming with the chance for all camera lovers to capture evocative, memorable photographs. Take out your digital camera and let pictures tell their own tale.

Click The Details To The Big Event

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Preparation for Christmas is perhaps the second best aspect of Christmas filled with exciting and fun moments that give you amazing photographic opportunities. Activities like food preparation, putting up decorations, wrapping gifts, kids having an outburst of excitement while getting dressed in their Christmas outfits and setting up the table can all be captured in memorable snaps. These shots before the Christmas party capture the zeal for the actual event.

Make sure all the photographs are captured at the right time with the appropriate light conditions. Go macro or wide, fill you frame and watch out for aperture, and shutter speed for good focused images.

Capturing Christmas Lights

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With the entire city embracing the spirit of Christmas and lit up in Christmas light decorations, it is the best time to do some digital photography at dusk. To prevent any motion blur use a tripod and set your camera’s shutter speed and aperture at low levels and a higher ISO than the normal. Depending whether you want a macro shot of a decoration or the entire scene, you may use the macro or wide angle lens.

For capturing Christmas lights indoors, the trick is to find the right time of the day and turning off your flash. You will never get the glow of the lights if you use your flash when taking photos of Christmas lights. The best time is perhaps at dusk when sufficient ambient light would be present but the room would be dark enough so that colors of the lights can be perfectly framed in the photograph. At other times of the day, photos might appear over-exposed because of sunlight during midday.

Photographing Christmas Decorations

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Although Christmas decorations appear as a clichd staple, there are interesting ways in which you can capture them. Use a macro lens to make the subject of your picture dominate the frame. This gives dimension and depth to the image and prevents viewer's eyes from darting around your image. The Bokeh technique, which is best when capturing ornaments, can be used with a smaller f number to add a blurry effect outside the field of depth. You can even simply cut out a shape on a black paperboard and place it in front of the lens to add character to your clicks.

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Taking Memorable Snaps Of The Christmas Tree

Consider the ambient light in the room and set the white balance against a grey test card to prevent images from appearing with an orange tint. Use a tripod to prevent shakes that could blur your image. Turn off image stabilization and start off by setting your camera’s ISO to 400. Adjust the shutter speed and/or f-stop until the exposure looks right. You can start with the f-stop at 8 and the exposure at 1/30th of a second and take test shots.

Christmas Morning Tells Its Own Tale

Christmas morning presents a great opportunity to capture an array of facial expressions and emotions while family members excitedly open up their presents. It is best to set the camera to a continuous shooting mode (burst mode) so that everything is captured right from the getting the wrapped gift, unwrapping and the reactions that follow. Avoid the flash and relying on the ambient light in the room, set the ISO higher and use a wide aperture and longer shutter speed. Click as many shots as you want to capture the natural expressions, moments, gifts, and quality time spent with the family.

References:

http://digital-photography-school.com/16-christmas-photography-tips

http://www.exposureguide.com/christmas-photography-tips.htm

http://www.slrphotographyguide.com/tips/christmas-lights.shtml

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You can use the '+' volume button as a shutter button when taking photos with your iPhone. This makes it easy to hold your iPhone like a normal camera when taking landscape photos.


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